07/21/10 5:31 PM ET
Pedro says he won't pitch in 2010
Veteran right-hander may still opt to return in 2011
By Alden Gonzalez / MLB.com
Martinez's agent, Fernando Cuza, told ESPNDeportes.com Wednesday -- less than two weeks before the July 31 non-waiver Trade Deadline -- that his client has opted to sit out the 2010 season, in order to spend more time with his family.
Whether that spells the end of an 18-year career that has included three Cy Young Awards, eight trips to the All-Star Game and 219 wins is still unknown.
"After a meeting to discuss his immediate future, Pedro decided he wouldn't pitch this year, in order to spend more time with his family in the Dominican Republic," Cuza told ESPNDeportes.com in Spanish.
"This does not mean Pedro is announcing his retirement from baseball, because the possibility that he changes his opinion for next season still exists. But today, he asked that I call the teams that were interested to reveal his decision."
Martinez signed with the Phillies in mid-July last season and joined the Major League club on Aug. 12, going 5-1 with a 3.63 ERA in nine starts to finish off the regular season, then going 0-2 with a 3.71 ERA in three postseason starts.
If it turns out that 2009 was indeed Martinez's final season, then his career will have ended after giving up four runs in four innings in the clinching Game 6 of the World Series to the Yankees -- the team he famously called "his daddy" while with the Red Sox.
"Pedro is appreciative of the interest some clubs demonstrated, but at this moment, he decided to put his family ahead of baseball," Cuza said. "Later, he will decide when to say goodbye [to the game] definitively."
Cuza told the Web site several contending teams were interested in the services of his 38-year-old client.
One of those was the Phillies. But when general manager Ruben Amaro Jr. spoke with Cuza prior to the All-Star Game, he found out Martinez still hadn't even thrown off the mound, making a return to Philadelphia highly unlikely.
Amaro noted that in 2009, Martinez had been on the mound "a lot" leading up to his eventual signing.
"From the [World Baseball Classic] on," he added from Anaheim recently. "They're different circumstances. He had thrown all the way up until now. He hasn't gotten on a mound. Only Pedro could say when he'd be ready. I'm sure he knows, but I couldn't tell you."
The Phillies are in need of starting pitching with Kyle Kendrick being optioned to the Minor Leagues and Jamie Moyer headed to the disabled list. They've been rumored to be in talks with the Astros about acquiring Roy Oswalt.
Alden Gonzalez is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.